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Anxiety...

 

ANXIETY:  a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome.  Both excessive or chronic anxiety can be very disruptive to your everyday functioning. It is also highly treatable.  You don’t have to suffer or miss out on life anymore!

  • Anxiety is the most common mental illness in the United States.

  • 40 million American adults live with anxiety disorders each year.

  • On average, women are 2x more likely than men to suffer from anxiety.

  • 1/2 of those with depression also experience anxiety, and vice versa.

  • Anxiety (& depression) often co-occur with other physical &/or mental disorders.

  • Genetics & environment both play a significant role in the development of anxiety disorders.

  • Anxiety sufferers are 3 to 5x more likely to go to their doctor for symptom relief.

(from adaa.org /Anxiety & Depression Association of America)

There are many types of anxiety disorders with both unique and overlapping symptoms, but they all involve:

  • fear (past, present or future situation)

  • physiological response (how our body responds)

  • avoidance of real or perceived physical or psychological threat (hardwired to fight, flight or freeze for survival)

  • associated cognitions, based on our experiences (what we “think” about this feared situation)

Panic attack symptoms:

  • racing heart

  • sweating

  • rapid, shallow breathing

  • fear of losing control or “going crazy”

  • chills or hot flashes

  • cheat pain

  • feelings of choking, difficulty swallowing

  • trembling

  • numbness

  • fear of dying

  • dizzy, faint

Even if you have never experienced a full blown panic attack, you certainly can experience one or more of the above symptoms to a lesser degree with your anxiety on a more frequent or chronic basis, depending on your circumstances and environment. Chronic stress can lead to:

  • memory problems, inability to concentrate, poor judgment, racing thoughts & constant worry

  • moodiness, irritability, short temper, inability to relax, feeling overwhelmed, isolated and lonely

  • increase or decrease in sleep, eating and energy, procrastination, neglecting responsibilities, using substances to relax, nail biting, pacing, etc…..

  • exhaustion, aches, pains, changes in bowel movement, nausea and dizziness

We experience the feeling of anxiety when faced with stressful situations.  What is stress?  A lack of resources for a current demand.  So stress, and resulting feelings of anxiety, can be induced from a real lack of resources (no money to pay a bill) or a perceived lack of resources (I will fail at the competition, I’m not good enough).

Remember, we are hard wired as humans to keep ourselves safe, both physically and psychologically.  So if you are overestimating the danger/threat in situations, it most likely served you well at some point in your life during a single event, or an ongoing situation or set of circumstances to help you feel safe.  However, if this is holding you back from meeting your current life needs & desires, it is no longer serving you well.  Instead, let’s redirect that energy in ways to develop resiliency, helping you feel safe to be yourself in the world.

Lets put your anxiety in it’s rightful place & keep it there!

You can do this by understanding how your anxiety works in your mind & body, identifying your triggers and individualizing your coping skills in response to stress or anxiety. 

HOW I CAN HELP:

  • I will help reduce any immediate discomfort you might be experiencing through deep abdominal breathing, guided imagery or other mindful exercises in order to calm your central nervous system and your mind, restoring a sense of calm and safety.

  • exploring and identifying any possible physiological causes or contributions to your anxiety.  Referral to your physician to rule this out if necessary.

  • identify & strengthen your current emotional support system

  • a deeper understanding of how and when your body and mind respond to anxiety (fight, flight or freeze), and how they influence one another.

  • explore thoughts and feelings associated with your anxiety

  • Identifying your unique strengths to develop and build individualized coping skills that build resiliency and adaptation within you, freeing you up to live and connect with others more joyfully!

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CALL FOR AN INITIAL FREE 30 MINUTE PHONE CONSULTATION AT 805-750-0356.